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MK Amir Ohana.(Photo by: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
Has Israel's education budget surpassed its defense budget?
By ALON EINHORN
07/17/2019
The numbers clearly show that the budget for security has been on the decline since the 1970's as other ministries are slowly catching up.
Justice Minister Amir Ohana, in an interview with Channel 13, claimed that the national budget assigned to the Education Ministry in 2018 surpassed the budget assigned to the Defense Ministry for the first time.

"Last year, if I'm not mistaken, the Education Ministry's budget surpassed the Defense Ministry's budget. We have never had such a thing in Israel's history," Ohana said.

According to financial online paper Globes, Ohana was not entirely wrong.

The national budget reports are harder to examine then merely comparing the two sections.

For example, the sheer numbers show that in 2016, the Education Ministry received NIS 51 billion, while the Defense Ministry received NIS 56 billion.

On the other hand, in 2017 the budget for education rose to NIS 54 billion while security decreased to NIS 52 billion.

However, part of the budget assigned to security – NIS 18 billion – comes in the form of monetary assistance from the United States, which would make the defense budget higher than education.

But then there's another factor to consider. Higher education is not included in the ministry's budget, but rather in a different section. Adding that to the education budget, it would seem that it did surpass the defense budget in 2018.

Globes stressed that there may be other factors not taken into account in the budget reports. However, the numbers clearly show that the budget assigned to security has been on the decline since the 1970's as other ministries are slowly catching up.


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